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Remote Possibilities | Benjamin Evans, Thea Jones, Cynthia Naggar, and Dominique Pétrin

Updated: Nov 30, 2022

November 8 – December 3, 2022

Opening Reception : Friday, November 18, 5–7pm

Struts Gallery is pleased to present Remote Possibilities, a new group exhibition featuring the work of Benjamin Evans, Thea Jones, Cynthia Naggar, and Dominique Pétrin, on view from November 8 – December 3, 2022. These artists were selected for Open Studio Residencies in 2020 but were unable to visit Sackville due to the pandemic. Each artist adapted their projects for digital dissemination and attempted to define an online residency experience for themselves with technical, administrative, and financial support from Struts Gallery. We are excited to bring a selection of this work together in Sackville and expand our conversations with and between these artists.

Remote Possibilities speaks to the experience of online art practices, of bringing work to life, transmission and reception, and our relationship to technology. Benjamin Evans’ Dream Realization Laboratory attempts to “codify the emotional content of an individual’s dreams” by using an algorithm to translate the brainwaves and biodata of

dreaming people into sculptures and images. In Thea Jones’ videos, we’re present for intimate studio performance as the young mother and breast cancer survivor turns the camera on herself in a series of small gestures to begin “a new (literal) body (of work)“. Dominique Pétrin explores camouflage through costume and performance, where she embodies a state of disappearance and ambiguously shifts between predator and prey. Metaphysical and physical space conflate in Cynthia Naggar’s video La Prière (The Prayer), where transmissions of faith entwine with interference and the sacred space of a church comes to life. In their own ways, each of these artists attempts to make visible the invisible by giving form to the intangible, the private, the secluded, and the sacred aspects of distinct human experience.

Benjamin Evans is an artist, writer and amateur dream researcher currently based in the French Alps. Originally from the Canadian province of Newfoundland, where he directed the non-profit gallery Eastern Edge, he also spent seven years living in New York City where he directed another non-profit gallery (NURTUREart), and was highly active in the emerging Bushwick scene. While living in Paris, he opened the itinerant gallery project Projective City, which exhibited the work of emerging artists in Paris, New York and virtual spaces in between. He holds five degrees, including a PhD in philosophy and an MFA in mixed media, and has taught at several institutions, including the Alberta College of the Arts, The Parsons School of Design in New York and Parsons Paris. Currently he is at a residency in the Swiss town of Brig, where he is writing a novel and making scrimshaw on phoney whale teeth.

Thea Jones is an interdisciplinary artist, working in video and textiles. She maintains a lifelong performance project which started in the summer 2013 called I will save the world by mending. Jones completed her MFA at York University, her thesis focused on repetition in language, video, and textiles as a way to re-imagine, re-invent, and remember. She received her BFA from Concordia University, and worked at Hexagram Institute for Research/Creation in Media Arts and Technologies. Jones has exhibited at PlugIn (Winnipeg MB), Cambridge Galleries (Cambridge ON), InterAccess (Toronto ON), Anna Leonowns Gallery (Halifax NS), and at the Amnua Nanjing Biennial (Nanjing China). Jones is currently a PhD candidate at York University in the Gender, Feminist and Women’s Study program, her research focuses on the precarity of women and mothers who are living post-surgery due to a cancer prevention or diagnosis. Jones lives in Hamilton ON with her family.

Cynthia Naggar is a filmmaker and media artist trained in interactive media and motion design. She has created independent short films as well as numerous multidisciplinary performances and installations using video, 2D/3D animation, electronics, sound, and video mapping. In recent years, her work has focused on biofeedback and the idea of making the invisible within us visible.

Dominique Pétrin is a visual artist living and working in between Montreal and rural Sainte-Adèle, Canada. For the past fifteen years, Dominique Pétrin has been working on installations created in situ, composed of hand silkscreen printed paper, cut, assembled and pasted to the walls in order to create immersive environments. A former member of the petrochemical rock band Les Georges Leningrad from 2000-2007, she also collaborated with renowned artists such as Sophie Calle, Banksy, Pil and Galia Kollectiv and choreographers Antonija Livingstone, Stephen Thompson and Andrew Tay. Her work has been exhibited in many artist-run centers across Canada, at the Musée d’art Contemporain de Montréal, Musée National des Beaux-Arts du Québecand have been nominated for the prestigious Sobey Art Award 2014.

Image: Benjamin Evans Dream of 48 year old Woman, Sept 1994 (five minute fragment). 3D printed filament, sequins, aluminum rod

Benjamin Evans, "Dream of 35 year old Woman, July 1994" (five minute fragment), 2021. 3D printed filament, imitation gold leaf, stone base, aluminum rod.

Installation, Remote Possibilities, Struts Gallery, November 28, 2022.

Dominique Pétrin, "Farewell II", photographed by Paul Litherland, 2022. Digital print on paper.

Cynthia Naggar, "La Prière (The Prayer)", 2022. Video and 3D.

Thea Jones, "Shushing", 2021. Video, performance.


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